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Offending Devotees – The Mad Elephant Offense

The Yamuna is a major tributary of the Ganga in northern India. Actually it is the main tributary. It is around 1400 kilometers long and therefore it is the longest tributary of the Ganga. According to sacred scriptures, the Yamuna is said to be the sister of the Ganga and that both of them descended from the spiritual world to purify the material creation. Like the Ganga, the Yamuna also has a personified form.

The source is found at a place called Saptarishi kund in the Himalayan glaciers. It is 12 kilometers above Yamunotri, on the mountains. Its course starts from Yamunotri and then it flows to Delhi, Vrindavan (the sacred land of Krishna), Mathura, Agra and finally merges with the Ganga and the invisible Saraswati at Prayag. Some say that its source is at Yamunotri, which is north of Haridwar in the Himalayan Mountains. The Yamuna is also a major “path” for transporting goods by boats to different parts of the northern parts of India.

The Yamuna came from the spiritual world to assist Lord Krishna in His pastimes 5000 years ago. During the several centuries, the Yamuna has been changing her course from time to time. Some say that she moves according to the will of the Lord. She is connected to many important pastimes of Lord Krishna. Many great sages and poets glorified her immensely for she is able to liberate one from the cycle of birth and death. Her water is considered to be the liquid form of the love of God.

The Yamuna and the Ganga are considered as the two most sacred rivers in India. We read in Srimad Bhagavatam (1.19.6): “As far as sanctity is concerned, the River Yamuna is more directly connected with Lord Krishna than the Ganga. The Lord sanctified the Yamuna from the beginning of His transcendental pastimes in the world. While His father Vasudeva was crossing the Yamuna with baby Lord Krishna for a safe place at Gokula on the other bank of the river from Mathura, the Lord fell down in the river, and by the dust of His lotus feet the river at once became sanctified.”

It is said that a dip in her waters is more purifying than in the Ganga. This is because the Ganga emanates from the lotus feet of Lord Vishnu whereas the Yamuna’s glories are far greater in the sense that she was the field for many pastimes of Lord Krishna. The Lord played in her water, drank her water and awarded her numerous benedictions. This is just a glimpse of her glories.

The Yamuna has been flowing by the Kesi Ghat since the ancient times. Kesi Ghat is the place where Krishna killed the Kesi demon. By coming in contact with her water, one is relieved of sinful reactions and the contamination of this world. In course of time, the person will attain the love of God and at the end of life he will go back to the spiritual kingdom, never to take birth again.

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